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Above: This 1944 picture shows Floyd Carlson at the controls of the rebuilt Model 30 Ship 1A.


Arthur Young who is standing on Carlson’s right side. Photo: Courtesy of the collection of Todd Carlson


abilities to the press and regional Civil Air Patrol. This is believed to have been the first indoor helicopter flight in the Western Hemisphere and only the sec- ond in the world (Tipton, 1983). Less than two months later, during a Fourth of July celebration at Buffalo’s Civic Stadium, Carlson flew the rebuilt Ship 1A in front of 42,000 people. The highlight of the show was when Floyd hovered Ship 2 while resting one of the front nose wheels in the outstretched hand of inventor Arthur Young (Spenser, 1998).


While helping to develop and determine the capabilities of the heli- copter in the mid-1940s, Floyd Carlson would perform some of the first non- military helicopter rescue missions ever conducted. The first rescue occurred in


ROTORCRAFTPROFESSIONAL


January of 1945 when Jack Woolams, a Bell test pilot, was test flying a P-59 Airacomet. Woolams was forced to eject from the P-59 at 10,000 feet, suffering a severe head injury when he hit the tail of the plane. After ejecting, the sudden deceleration caused by his parachute deploying jerked his boots off of his feet. Woolams landed in a remote field and walked barefoot for several miles to a farmhouse where a farmer phoned for help. The roads were blocked due to heavy snow, and an ambulance was unable to get to Woolams.


Larry Bell


personally ordered the use of his still experimental helicopter to help save the life of his test pilot. Floyd Carlson took off in Ship 2, landed in a parking lot to pick up Dr. Thomas Marriott, and then flew to the farmhouse. He was able to


30


land on an area of snow packed down by the farmer, who had been instructed to do so by Bell factory personnel. Dr. Marriott treated Woolams’s injuries and frostbite at the farmhouse until a snow- plow was able to clear a path for an ambulance to retrieve the injured pilot (Norton, D., 1981). Woolams later made a full recovery thanks to Floyd Carlson’s quick delivery of medical assistance. In March of 1945, two ice fishermen, Arthur Johnson and Wallace Gillson, were trapped on an ice flow drifting in Lake Erie.


After several


failed attempts to reach the stranded fishermen by rescue boats, the Coast Guard contacted Bell Aircraft to deter- mine if their new machine could help. At the time of the incident the center of gravity of the Model 30 and the range of


Several Bell engineers and mechanics troubleshoot a problem, including Model 30 inventor


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